There s one thing that you must accept before you read these books lives like those written about in Gossip Girl exist And I know this because I live it Granted, I m much like the Jenny Humphrey type who witnesses the drama from the outside, but I still hear about it And yes, that s what the popular kids do They rent limos and get drunk or high in them on their way to Manhattan clubs where they then hook up with all their friends and their friends friends What you wear defines you, you get cool points for professionally modeling or acting, and your address is a label The drama is just part of the territory And the stress and expectations are preposterous, with college and social etiquette and whatnot, and any one toe out of line can have you packing for boarding school in an instant And really, there s next to no parental love there s just a gaping loneliness that s seemingly inescapable That theme felt evident to me in these books.I found Blair to be thrilling, quite honestly Maybe it s partly because I know so many girls just like her, but she was so amusing to shadow, as bitchy and temperamental as she was She was refreshing and comical and outrageous, and it s so rare to read a book whose main character is an antiheroine In comparison to the other characters, Blair is complex, striking, and quite unique This book isn t meant to give you a great plot to ponder More than anything, it frames an unfortunate reality fleeting moments of superficial joy to cover up the gray And if anything, these books can be pretty hilarious sometimes. This is very possibly the worst book I have ever read The author clearly knows nothing about 16 year olds aside from what she s seen in horrible television shows all the ones just like the show this series spawned The characters are all 2 dimensional and predictable all super hot, super trendy, super rich, super popular and few if any have any redeeming qualities Even the kids who are supposed to be different are cookie cutter artsy kids who spend all their time sitting in corners brooding and trying to look mysterious while writing terrible poetry and reading Russian literature.The narrative itself is absolutely horrible I feel like I could have written this book when I was 12 years old, only I actually was able to create character development at that age and I m not a writer Lines like Dan wasn t into being healthy He liked to live on the edge made me feel like I was reading bad fan fiction on the internet 7 years ago.I find it incredibly disturbing that something this awful was even published, nevermind the fact that it s aimed toward young girls The characters behaviour are terrible, and it s glamourized to the point of being pathetic And this series is marketed toward young girls Ignore the 15 and older warning on the back, 11 year olds are reading this and emulating this behaviour Because books and tv shows like this tell them it s totally cool.This book filled me with such untold rage I couldn t even bring myself to finish it, even though it only took me an hour to get through the first half If you love your braincells, you ll stay away. i thought about giving this book five stars, not because it s so great, but because i think everyone with daughters should at least look at it my 14 year old has devoured all eight or nine in the series good god and i felt like i ought to know what she was reading gossip girl is absolutely the biggest piece of crap i ve ever slogged through, but, that said, i did finish it, mostly out of a horrified curiosity at what interests 9th graders these days it really was absolute dreck by page 39 there was discussion of a sex between tenth graders, b copious drinking in front of insanely permissive parents, c dope smoking galore, and d bulimia as a way of life the story was all over the place and at the same time didn t seem to go anywhere, characters were poorly defined, everybody was self absorbed and dumb as mud at one point the girls use the central park falcons as an excuse to throw a fundraising party and they have to look up the word falcon in the dictionary I suppose i m reacting too strongly and the book is really just a guilty pleasure or a good beach read or whatever but the thought that my daughter and her friends might come to think of this paris hilton like behavior as not necessarily normal, but perhaps something to aspire to, is truly disturbing. During the particularly bleak summer of my 11th year, I spent a month hiding from my wicked step mother in the basement bedroom I shared with my sister No TV, no movies, and very little radio reception meant I read than usual, and when I went through my own summer reading, I started borrowing from my sister, whose taste ran mostly to Goosebumps and Choose Your Own Adventure books which were, admittedly, totally awesome But she did have some racier titles tucked away The book I remember in particular was about a girl who got run over by her best friend after sleeping with the friend s boyfriend while high as a kite on strawberry flavored hash The dead girl then somehow inhabits the body of her murderous friend and spends the book trying to figure out how she died, while intermittently having second hand, multi positional sex with the newly reunited couple It was disturbing and sexy and taboo and I read it twice in one day.What s the point of all this, you ask The point is this Given the alluring, soft lit ads that the CW has been spinning out about the new Gossip Girl TV show, I was really hoping the book would have that same sort of effect I was hoping that somewhere out there, a sheltered teenage girl was hiding this book under her mattress and pulling it out in secret to learn about blow jobs and pot smoking and underage drinking To be fair, Gossip Girl does cover this ground amply its debauched youths smoke French cigarettes on the steps of the MET, drink cosmos and vodka tonics in swank hotel bars, molest each other, sleep around, and buy pot in Central Park Unfortunately, though, the sense of taboo is lost Don t get me wrong I m not asking for moralizing I just think it takes away a lot of the fun when no limits are being defied These kids don t have to steal liquor from their parents cabinets they buy them at members only, A list clubs They don t have surreptitious sex in the back of parked cars they get seduction advice from their parent s lovers If I had read this as a teenager, I wouldn t have had anything to live vicariously through It would simply have been too unimaginable that I could possibly experience anything that these uber cool semi adults do.My other qualm well, main qualm I have limited space here is the overall irony of the book Cecily Von Ziegesar what an appropriate name, no gets it Her anonymous gossip blogger gets it Her artsy outcast reading Camus on the traffic island gets it Her rebel turned reject heroine gets it And they re all above it, too Beautiful wild child Serena may be so worried about her future that she can t taste her Tic Tacs, but at the end of the day, she still knows how to play the game She could keep up with the likes of Christina Aguilera and Joaquin Phoenix No Problem The outcast may succumb to his fantasies of what it would be like to escort a rich girl to a benefit party while wearing an Armani suit, but he ll end up taking the suit back to the department store before he makes a fool of himself This is exactly the problem They know too much to make fools of themselves Even when they fuck up even when they sleep with their best friend s boyfriend, when they spend a night vomiting on themselves in their own bed there s no embarrassment, no regret Nothing at stake They re still beautiful and rich and savvy no matter what, and they ll always get what they want eventually.Not for nothing though, Gossip Girl still includes such gem observations as Blairgap ed at Nate s hard on It looked like it was going to take over the world, and may be able to single handedly re educate us fogeys on the multitudinous uses of the word slut So that s gotta count for something Thx, GG Welcome To New York City S Upper East Side, Where My Friends And I Live, Go To School, Play, And Sleep Sometimes With Each OtherS Is Back From Boarding School, And If We Aren T Careful, She S Going To Win Over Our Teachers, Wear That Dress We Couldn T Fit Into, Steal Our Boyfriends Hearts, And Basically Ruin Our Lives In A Major Way I Ll Be Watching CloselyYou Know You Love Me,gossip Girl This was an enjoyable story, but the pace was a little slow there seemed to be lots of scene setting and not so much action. Look I don t want to sound too much like Tipper Gore in the 80 s, or too much like Maude Flanders of The Simpsons, tearing out my hair and screeching WHAT ABOUT THE CHILDREN but this book Are you fucking kidding me Have teenagers really grown up so much in the 9 years since I was one, when I was content with R.L Stine and Christopher Pike, and scandalized by Sweet Valley High I mean, COME ON.Not only is this book written with the intelligence of a monkey on acid, there s just something stomach churning about a plot less book about teenagers with too much money gulping down booze, sticking their fingers down their throats, sleeping with each other s boyfriends, and saturating it with deep prose suck as shit, fuck, slut, bitch, whore, etc as if it were all normality, you know, just a day in the life Christ.The actual Gossip Girl TV show is so great that I felt inspired to read the book but what makes the program so awesome is that they just stole a premise, a few characters, and a general plot outline from the novel leaving the rest as he horrible pile of shit it is If I ever catch my future kids reading this, I will smack them on the head for being so goddamn stupid Sucked. Gossip Girl is a richly detailed look into the lives of Upper East Side teenagers I enjoyed getting into the hipster characters, the ones who read poetry, drink black coffee, and aren t extravagantly wealthy Dan, Vanessa, Jenny Jenny is adorable and likable as she constantly strives for a place in the It crowd Dan is a scruffy hipster with an infatuation for a pretty, popular girl he doesn t really know As you read through Dan s feelings and narration, you root for this awkward guy with poetic feelings for his polar opposite As you read through Vanessa s section, you see Dan as an awkward, stereotypical guy who simply likes this girl for her beauty Each character has a distinct viewpoint that always changes your perspective on the situation Let s move on to the rich characters I always get a Gatsby like feeling from this book All these characters are dirty, filthy rich, and yet always seem to be chronically unhappy You want to hate them for being spoiled brats, but I usually just end up feeling empathy for them Blair is constantly plagued by insecurity, shown through her bulimia and is left with the feeling that she will always be overlooked when placed next to Serena Serena has looks and charm, but is hated by everyone, usually out of jealousy It made me feel empowered and bold when she stopped trying to fit in and decided to make new, unconventional friends Yeah, they re a bunch of spoiled rich kids But they have the same problems as the average teenager, just in a extravagant setting If you want a piece of escapist fantasy, and your fantasy involves New York, hipsters, and expensive penthouses, pick this up. . So, I basically just read the pilot episode Snobby girls and boys doing inappropriate things for sixteen year olds and there s nothing much else to it.